“Don Carlo, one of the most enigmatic, yet profoundly beautiful operas Giuseppe Verdi ever composed. The story takes place in the mid-1500s, at the time of the Spanish Inquisition, and it’s loosely based on historical characters and events. The title character is the son of Spain’s King Phillip II, and he is clearly both bewitched and bothered — his real-life counterpart was sometimes described as simply insane.
As for bewildered, that’s how audiences sometimes feel at the end of the opera. The drama has a complicated plot, weaving together any number of personal, political and theological conflicts, and wrapping them all up in a climactic ending which can easily leave opera-goers wondering what the heck just happened.
Still, in typical fashion, Verdi took all of the story’s complexities and confusions and left us with a great opera. It’s a work that takes just about every moral dilemma imaginable and gives them all recognizable, human faces. And they’re the sort of faces one sees every day — sometimes, even in the mirror….” NPR
Daniel Juarez, Don Carlo
Stefan Szafarowsky, Grand Inquisitor (May 11, 17, 26)
Nathan Resika, Grand Inquisitor (May 10), A monk (May 11, 17, 26)
Andrew Costello, Rodrigo, Marquis of Posa
Steve Frederiks, King Philip II
Jurate Svedaite, Élisabeth de Valois
Galina Ivannikova, Princess of Eboli
Joel Edwards, The Count of Lerma, Royal Herald
Ari Bell, A monk (May 10)
Mary McCue, Tebaldo, A Voice from Heaven
Hanna Omori, Tebaldo, A Voice from Heaven
Sierra Manning, Countess of Aremberg
Adrian Sylveen, Conductor, Artistic Director
Jan Mason, Stage Director
Dara Blackstone, Choirmaster
Lights Designer: Joe Marturano – Thunder and Lighting
Stage Manager: Ruth Connors
Rehearsal Pianist: Blake Hansen
Fri, May 10, 7:30 p.m.
Trinity-On-Main Arts Center, New Britain | tickets>>>
Saturday, May 11, 7:30 p.m.
Santo Fragilio Performing Arts Center at MHS, Middletown | tickets>>>
Friday, May 17, 7:30p.m.
Garde Arts Center, New London | tickets>>>
Sun, May 26, 2:00 p.m.
Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford | tickets>>>
Born and raised in Pearl City, Hawaii, Stage Director Jan Mason is a proud graduate of Punahou School. After graduating from Emerson College, Jan founded Hold the Phone Productions, a collaborative group of artists committed to creating alternative theatre in the Boston area, where she produced and directed new plays. After several years of directing and acting in Boston, Jan relocated to New York City where she worked with the Jose Limon Dance Foundation, and became Managing Director of Arden Party, an Off-Off-Broadway theatre company (Karin Coonrod, Artistic Director). During her tenure as Managing Director Jan produced the critically acclaimed Victor or Children Take Over at the Ohio Theatre, lauded as “Smashing!” by Ben Brantley of The New York Times. That season she brought the company to fiscal solvency, and secured the largest base of Government, Foundation and Corporate funding in the company’s history. Following the success of Victor, Jan focused her energies on directing. She developed new work with Ensemble Studio Theatre (Theatre Lab Member), The Women’s Project (Director’s Forum Member), Rattlstick Playwright’s Theatre (Artistic Associate), New Georges (Affiliated Artist & Roaring Girl), NYCFringe, Manhattan Theatre Source, Screaming Venus, Lightning Strikes Theatre, and The Basic Theatre. In addition, she worked at the Ohio Theatre (Wooster St), HERE Arts Center, Dixon Place, the Present Company Theotorium, Todo con Nada (Ludlow St), and other downtown venues. In the years since earning her Master of Fine Arts Degree in Directing from the University of Virginia, Jan has taught theatre classes at several institutions including Western Connecticut State University, Fairfield University and Housatonic Community College. She is currently Assistant Professor at Central Connecticut State University. She has had the pleasure of studying with Doreen Bechdol, Harold Bloom, Tom Bloom, Bob Chapel, Myles Coiner, Bob Colby, Kathleen Donohue, Sabin Epstein, John Frick, Anna Halprin, Tim House, Ron Jenkins, Emily Kent (Pilobolus company), Marianne Kubik, Mark Lamos (Westport Country Playhouse), Richard Mold (The New Theatre), Edward Morehouse (HB Studios), Michael Rasbury, Mike Rock (Improv Olympics), Kim Rubinstein, Maureen Shea, Norman Taylor (Lecoq technique), Polly Teale (Shared Experience), Richard Toma, Betsy Tucker, Andrew Wade, Richard Warner, and Gweneth West.
Tenor Daniel Juárez is becoming well-known to New England opera audiences, having performed with Connecticut Lyric Opera, Opera Theater of Connecticut, MetroWest Opera, Western Connecticut State University Opera Studio, and in various recital and concert venues throughout the region. His recent operatic credits include Don José in Bizet’s Carmen, the title role in Gounod’s Faust, Rodolfo in Puccini’s La Bohème, The Italian Singer in Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier, Pinkerton in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, and Erik in Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman. Of a recent performance Faust, The Town Times of Middletown, CT said “Juarez… sang a Faust of both great refinement and passion, and his top notes flowed freely and effortlessly.” The Day of New London, CT said of his performance of Erik in Wagner’s The Flying Dutchman: “Juarez almost stole the show Saturday, his full-throated tenor filing the hall with anger and frustration…” Of his Don Jose in Bizet’s Carmen, the Town Times said: “…the real revelation of the evening was tenor Daniel Juarez as Don Jose… he flooded the theater with big, burnished, baritonal sounds, a powerful top, and plenty of gut-wrenching passion…” The Day of New London, CT described his performance in Carmen as “a riveting evening of musical drama by tenor Daniel Juarez” and further noted, “His growing vocal ardor, a smooth and powerful tenor well-suited to this French material, and stagecraft through the final two acts . . . were character development writ large. From the Act 2 aria “La fleur que tu m’avais jetée” through the impassioned duets that followed to the finale, Juarez was the evening’s emotional epicenter.” Daniel has also been featured as the tenor soloist in a number of oratorio and concert performances, including Handel’s Messiah, Mozart’s Requiem and Vesperae Solennes de Confessore, J.S. Bach’s Magnificat, Ariel Ramirez’ Misa Criolla, Heinrich Schütz’ Sieben Worte Jesu Christi am Kreuz, and Theodore Dubois’ Seven Last Words of Christ. Of a performance of Rossini’s Stabat Mater the New Canaan (CT) News said: “The most spectacular of the arias was “Cujus Animam,” which takes the tenor soloist to a stratospheric high d-flat. Dan Juarez made it look easy. He has a full dramatic sound, somewhat dark, but flexible, undaunted by Rossini’s demands that took him all over his range.” Daniel is a graduate of the Yale University School of Music, a former Minnesota Opera Studio Artist, and onetime finalist in the Southwest Region Metropolitan Opera National Council auditions.
Stefan Szkafarowsky, bass, known for his beautiful bass voice and his impeccable vocal technique. Mr. Szkafarowsky has sung not only at the Met, but at many well-known opera houses in the United States and abroad, including such venues as the LA Opera, Virginia Opera, Seattle Opera, Dallas, Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Opera Colorado, Florida Grand Opera, Sao Paulo Opera in Brazil, Teatro Lirico in Cagliari, Italy, Savonlinna Music Festival in Finland and the Lviv Opera in Ukraine. The main bass roles that he has performed have been from world-renowned operas such as “Aida,” “Macbeth,” “Nabucco,” “Don Carlos,” “The Marriage of Figaro,” “The Barber of Seville,” “Eugene Onegin,” “Rusalka,” “Boris Godunov,” “The Magic Flute,” “Rigoletto,” “Il Trovatore,” “La Boheme,” “Lucia di Lammermoor” and “Aleko.” Mr. Szkafarowsky has had the great honor to share the stage with wonderful artists as Placido Domingo, Luciano Pavarotti, Paul Plishka, Sherill Milnes, Maria Ciara, Piero Cappuccilli and many of today’s fantastic artists.Nathan Resika, Grand Inquisitor (May 10), A monk (May 11, 17, 26)
Andrew Costello, baritone, brings with him a wealth of performance experience, having sung more than twenty-five leading operatic roles in the United States and Europe. His accomplishments range from the baroque music of Monteverdi to the advanced tonalities of contemporary opera. Mr. Costello returned to Des Moines Metro Opera as Scarpia in Tosca. He recently gave a recital in Milan, Italy, honoring the legacy of baritone Piero Cappuccilli. He also recently debuted in the title role of Der Fliegende Holländer in New York City. Mr. Costello’s career began with Glimmerglass Opera in L’Incoronazione di Poppea, directed by Jonathan Miller and conducted by Jane Glover. He has since appeared with, among others, the Atlanta Opera and Des Moines Metro Opera, where he made his debut as Jokanaan in Salomé. Notable roles include Don Alfonso in Così fan Tutte, Alfio in Cavalleria Rusticana and Alidoro in La Cenerentola. As a concert soloist, Mr. Costello made his debut at Carnegie Hall in Mozart’s Requiem and was invited back to sing in Handel’s Messiah. Mr. Costello’s career in Europe was launched when he won the auditions for the prestigious International Opera Studio of Zürich. This success was followed by appearances with Cologne Opera, Bremerhaven Opera, the Neubrandenburg Philharmonic, Mecklenburg Landestheater, and Stadttheater Giessen. His performances include Mephisto in The Damnation of Faust, the Four Villains in Tales of Hoffmann, Mephisto in Louis Spohr’s Faust, Escamillo in Carmen, Pizarro in Fidelio, and the High Priest in Samson et Dalila. He also performed as Wotan in Das Rheingold under the baton of Dr. Gustav Kuhn at the Tiroler Festival in Erl, Austria. Mr. Costello has sung with many important conductors such as Anton Coppola, Jérôme Pillement, Jane Glover, Frédéric Chaslin, and Dr. Robert Larsen. A native of New York City, Mr. Costello was born into a musical family, where he was instilled with a love of music. He was first recruited to sing at the age of four by the local church choir director, his mother. His father, a clarinetist with The Florida Symphony, taught him clarinet and music theory. Metropolitan Opera Baritone, Abe Polakoff provided his vocal instruction.
Steven Fredericks, bass-baritone represents the complete package of an artistically satisfying performer. Hailed for his “robust” singing with “great emotional depth” he has made his mark with some of opera’s most celebrated roles. Fredericks’ impressive repertory spans all styles and represents his versatility as a performer. From favorite Puccini roles, Colline and Timur, to the most heroic of Wagner’s characters, he continually explores all dimensions of his talents. Capable in title roles like Massenet’s Don Quichotte and Wagner’s Dutchman, he is no stranger to supporting roles, offering memorable portrayals of Verdi’s Lodovico in Otello, the King of Egypt (Aida) and the Bonze in Madama Butterfly. Notably, Fredericks created the role of Signorelli in the world premier of Louis Gioia’s Un Racconto Fiorentino at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center. He also contributed to the premiere of Lee Hoiby’s The Tempest at the Dallas Opera singing the role of Antonio, the ambitious evil brother. Other recent performances include the bass soloist in Handel’s Messiah at Carnegie Hall, Strommenger in La Wally with Teatro Grattacielo at Allice Tully Hall conducted by Guido Ajmone-Marsan, Reinmar in Tannhäuser with The Baltimore Opera conducted by Christian Badea and Ferrando in Il Trovatore with Maestro Anton Coppola. Fredericks frequently appears with Maestro Vincent La Selva and the New York Grand Opera in Central Park, New York City. He sang the role of Filippo in a highlighted version of Don Carlo at the 1997 Opera America Convention in Philadelphia. Internationally, he has performed with The Chuvash State Theatre (Russia) as Sparafucile in igoletto, and the Herald in Lohengrin, Paris/Saone-et-Loire (France) where he also appeared as the bass soloist in the Beethoven 9th symphony. Recently, he has performed Zaccaria in Nabucco and the title role in Boito’s efistofele with the Taconic Opera and Crespel in Les Contes d’Hoffmann with The Connecticut Lyric Opera. Upcoming roles include Ramfis in Aida and Lodovico in Otello with The New York Grand Opera celebrating the 200 birth year of Guiseppe Verdi. Mr. Fredericks graduated from Indiana University with a degree in vocal performance and continued his studies at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia.
Possessing a vocal artistry and stage presence capable of “transfixing audiences with moments of opera magic,” Lithuanian soprano, Jurate Šedaite, has performed on four continents with organizations such as the Lithuanian National Chamber Orchestra, the Israel Chamber Orchestra, Connecticut Lyric Opera, Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra, Connecticut Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra, ProLirica de Medellin (Columbia), Kaunas (Lithuania) Chamber Orchestra, Classical Orchestra of Piła (Poland), the Lithuanian National Ensemble “Lietuva”, Schlern International Music Festival (Italy), Greve Opera Festival (Italy), San Gimignano Music Festial (Italy), Pazaislis International Music Festival (Lithuania), among others, in venues as varied as Carnegie Hall, the Lithuanian National Philharmonic and Teatro Metropolitan (Columbia). On the stage, Ms. Švedaitė has performed more than 20 leading roles including Cio-cio San in Madama Butterfly, the diva Tosca, Violetta in La Traviata, Mimi in La Bohème, Contessa in Le Nozze di Figaro, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni, Desdemona in Otello, Senta in Die Fliegende Hollander, Marguerite in Faust and Micaela in Carmen. An active perfomer of sacred works and oratorios as well, her credits include Bach’s Mass in B minor, Mozart’s Requiem, Brahm’s Ein Deutsches Requiem, Verdi’s Requiem and Orff’s Carmina Burana, while orchestral works include Strauss’ Vier letzte Lieder, Barber’s Knoxville Summer of 1915, Respighi’s Il Tramonto and a number of Bach’s secular cantatas. The granddaughter of one of Lithuania’s most revered composers and arrangers of traditional music, Jonas Švedas, Ms. Švedaitė attended the Lithuanian Music Academy where she earned Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Opera Performance and Vocal Instruction. She now resides in the United States where she an Associate Professor at Connecticut College as well as teaches voice at Choate Rosemary Hall and Thames Valley Music School.
Bass Nathan Resika is delighted to return to Connecticut Lyric Opera to make his debuts as both the Grand Inquisitor (opening night) and the Monk( 3 other shows). His Past Ct.Lyric Engagements were as Leporello(Don Giovanni) and Daland( Flying Dutchman) in 2013, and as Il Commendatore( Don Giovanni)way back in 2006. Nathan’s favorite repertoire includes the great bass roles of both Verdi and Mozart, of which he has sung almost all. Nathan has performed roles with Caramoor, Opera North, Opera Orchestra of New York, the Center for Contemporary Opera, Cleveland Opera Circle, Connecticut Lyric Opera, Opera New Jersey, the New Britain Symphony, and Utah Festival Opera, among others. He has performed return engagements for many of these companies. Nathan proudly and joyously Made his Carnegie Hall debut on June 2nd, 2018, as Bass soloist In both Beethoven and Haydn Masses for Mid America productions. Nathan was one of 8 finalists out of over 100 singers in the 2016 New Jersey Verismo Opera Competition. Nico Castel wrote of Nathan: “Mr. Resika is gifted with a splendid bass instrument. Musical…intelligent…He had an excellent working relationship with his colleagues.” Nathan helped to create several roles in modern operas; among them Senator Heflin in Clarence and Anita by Ben Yarmolinsky, the diabolical Sir Danvers Carew in Barry O’Neal’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and The Man in J D McClatchy and Francis Thorne’s Mario and the Magician, which was recorded for Albany Records. Nathan has been a resident artist at Caramoor(2008), Utah Festival Opera(2006), and Opera New Jersey(2004). Nathan has performed in concert in Hungary, Greece, throughout the United States, and has sung the national anthem at many sporting events. Raised in New York City by a musical family, Nathan sang, acted, and played folk and rock guitar from an early age, studied classical guitar with Julio Prol and John Williams (Cordoba, Spain), and continued his studies at both New England Conservatory and the Longy School. Also a great lover of the gospel and spiritual music, Nathan was a featured performer at the first Sam Cooke memorial tribute concert in Atlanta in 2002, where he sang for Sam Cooke’s family. A FIDE( World Chess Federation) Master of chess, Nathan is also the 2013 United States senior Chess co-champion. He enjoys teaching the fine points of the game to children in after-school programs as well as private instruction for children and adults.
Dramatic mezzo-soprano Galina Ivannikova is hailed by critics and audiences for her rich, lustrous voice as much as passionate dramatic portrayals. Bruce Michael Gelbert of the NY Art Review raved about her “ her timbre ruby in color, her chest register aptly gusty and her emotional pitch-perfect”, “big, glorious Verdi voice in the Golden Age tradition.” In the season 2018-2019 she engaged to sing the role of Amneris with Gateway Classical Music society, the role of the Witch in Hansel and Gretel, Azucena from Il Trovatore with Regina Opera, Eboli From Don Carlo with CT Lyric opera, Ulrica from Un Ballo with Amore Opera, Mahler’s Das Lied von Der Erde (mezzo solo), Samson and Dalilah and Santuzza from Cavalleria Rusticana with East Coast Harbor Opera, and the series of classical concerts in NY.
In 2017-2018 season her engagements included the role of Amneris in Verdi’s Aida with Connecticut Lyric Opera and Westside Opera society . The role of Waltraute from Wagner’s Götterdummerung she will sing with NYVWOG. Also, she will perform the role of Leonora in Donizetti’s La Favorite with WSO and the Mezzo Solo in Mahler’s Das Lied von den Erde with NYVWOG. In previous seasons she appeared as Amneris (Aida) with Opera Memphis, TN, Nicklausse/Muse (The Tales of Hoffman) with Connecticut Lyric Opera. Ms. Ivannikova was critically acclaimed for her portrayal of Azucena (Il Trovatore) with Verismo Opera, where she also performed Santuzza (Cavalleria Rusticana). Her wide-ranging repertoire includes the title role of Carmen, Waltraute in Wagner’s Götterdämmerung, Erda in Wagner’s Das Rheingold, Fricka in Wagner’s Die Walküre, Dalilah in Saint-Saëns’ Samson et Dalilah, Leonora in Donizetti’s La Favorita, Azucena in Verdi’s Il Trovatore, Eboli in Verdi’s Don Carlo,Ulrica in Verdi’s Un Ballo in Maschera, La Cieca/Laura in Ponchielli’s La Gioconda, Principessa in Cilea’s Adriana Lecouvreur, Olga/Nurse/Larina in Eugene Onegin and Marfa in Khovanshchina, mezzo solo in Verdi’s Requiem. Ms. Ivannikova is a first place winner of the University of Memphis Concerto Competition and is currently completing a doctorate in vocal performance at the University of Memphis.
Joel Edwards Jr., originally from Boston recently completed an MM and GPD in opera performance from the Longy School of Music of Bard College. Recent roles included the title role in Candide and Jake in Second Nature, an East coast premier with Opera del West, Tamino in Die Zauberflote with Connecticut Lyric Opera, Don Jose in Halifax Opera’s Carmen in Nova Scotia, the title role in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann and Nemorino in Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore with Longy Opera Theater. In 2016, the tenor worked as a festival artist with Utah Festival Opera and Musical Theater and sang the roles of Nelson and Crabman in Porgy & Bess, Noodler in Peter Pan, along with covering the role of Luigi in Il Tabarro.
Mary McCue, soprano, earned a Bachelors in Music from the University of Connecticut in 2009. While there, Ms. McCue was a member of the opera theater program where she performed one of her most memorable roles as Cathleen in Vaughn Williams’ Riders to the Sea. She joined CLO in 2017 for the Greve Opera Academy & Music Festival in Chianti, Italy where she performed the role of Fiordiligi in Mozart’s Cosi fan Tutte. Since then, she has performed for CLO in several productions including: Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas (Belinda), Mozart’s Die Zauberflote (First Lady), Verdi’s Aida (chorus). She returned to the Greve program this summer to sing Countess in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro. Ms. McCue has also been the featured soloist in Requiem settings by Faure, Mozart, and Brahms and most recently Schubert’s Mass No.2 in G Major. She is currently the cantor for St. Cyril & St. Methodius Church in Hartford, CT.
Hana Omori, soprano, born in New York, grow up in Kobe Japan, made the move from Japan to Boston to pursue her artistic dreams 2 years ago. Having received a masters degree in vocal performance from Kyoto City University of Art and studied at graduate performance diploma in Opera at Longy school of Music where she studies with Robert Honeysucker and Donna Roll. Recent credits include Carmen (Frasquita, cover) with Connecticut Lyric Opera, Giulio Cesare (Cleopatra) with Connecticut Virtuoso Summer Opera Institute, Les Contes d’Hoffmann (Antonia) with Longy School of Music, La Clemenza di Tito (Servilia) with Promenade Opera Project, Carmen (Micaëla/Frasquita) with Shunzyuza Opera, Il Barbiere di Siviglia (Berta) with Syunzyuza Opera, L’elisir d’amor (Adina) with Kyoto University of Art, Beethoven’s Symphony No.9 Soprano Soloist with KiraKira Boshi Symphony Orchestra.
“Bass-baritone Ari Bell recently completed his undergraduate education at Vassar College, where he studied Music and German Language. He is the recipient of the Lucia V. Torian Award for music performance, and was a winner of the Vassar College Concerto & Aria Competition. Past roles have included Creonte in Cesti’s Orontea, Seneca in Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea, and Mozart roles including Masetto, Colas, Buff, and scenes of Figaro and Leporello. Ari’s talents have brought him around the globe, including programs in France, Italy, and Austria, as well as performances in Japan, Cuba, and Uganda. In addition to operatic repertoire, Ari is well versed in song and musical theater, and has performed the Sondheim roles of Rapunzel’s Prince and Count Carl-Magnus. This summer, Ari will join the Janiec Opera Company of the Brevard Music Center, where he will perform Capulet in Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette and cover Blitch in Carlisle Floyd’s Susannah.”